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same day with all of the fragrance of the original German preserved. Are you interested in folk music? We have it here, with Creole, Indian, or negro flavoring as desired, and ready to serve. You cannot digest raw folk music, but after it has been through a special process in our factories a child could take it in. "There's a reason."
This principle, which is so engaging and advantageous when applied to whiffled wheat or Boston pork and beans, does not work so happily in the case of music, nor can I think that the American public is under any considerable delusion about it. In New York and Boston they certainly know what good music is, and are probably aware that the line of goods supplied by most of the young men named in this programme is not going to create a very large market for itself. There is no reason why one should be contemptuous of such efforts, however; they are merely a sign of that love of technique which is one of the foundations of genius. Having heard much Wagner, for example, Mr. McCoy conceived the very noble and laudable ambition to write like Wagner; and, for my part, if composers are to imitate anyone I am quite content they should imitate Wagner if only they do it well enough. But even in their imitations they do not display half the cleverness and grasp of technique which our modern English school of composers has acquired. Mr. Loeffler's brand of Debussy is infinitely inferior to Mr. Cyril Scott's, and he lacks the originality which makes Mr. Cyril Scott a composer on his own account when he SO chooses. Mr. Chadwick's "Lochinvar" was a rather spirited, but otherwise undistinguished, exercise in that use of Scottish tonality which Mr. William Wallace has done so exceedingly well; and, if one were looking for further parallels, one might put the music of The Saturday Review.
Mr. Farwell, Mr. Bergh and Mr. Shelley below that of Mr. Harty, Mr. Bantock, and Mr. German respectively -and very far below it. I mention these names not because I think such comparisons either civil or illuminating, but merely to give my readers a standard by which to judge my impression of this representative American music. Edward MacDowell's Concerto of course is in quite another class. It is big and serious music, brilliantly written, and, if not of very deep originality, yet displaying a very sound and noble sense of the idiom of the greatest German composers. The Scherzo is a delicious movement, full of a kind of teasing unrest such as that which a breeze makes among great trees on a summer afternoon, and not without that little cadence of melancholy which all scherzos should have, which is the spirit of the same summer afternoon when the breeze is dying and the sunbeams slanting.
I think it not unlikely that the music of the future will come from this country, when its childish spirit shall have grown up and blossomed, when the torment of youth is over and it opens into a broad maturity. But in matters of art it seems to me not yet adolescent; the time of torment has not yet begun. Our giant children are still only children, and the torment of this place is a torment inflicted on the rest of the world rather than one felt in their own hearts. They are merely making a commotion and a racket in playing with all their gigantic toysplaying at building and throwing down the buildings as soon as they are finished; playing at railways, playing at religion, playing at life, playing at art. For the moment we can only stop our ears; but when they grow a little more, when it is springtime in their hearts, we shall do well to listen, for assuredly they will have a message for the world.
AN ODE OF WELCOME TO THE DELEGATES TO THE IMPERIAL PRESS CONFERENCE.
Mother of many Nations! take not now
Thy shield, thy trident; but put on the charms
Of summer sweetness, and with opening arms,
These shepherds of the flocks beyond thy sight
For these are sons, who watch afar
The glory of thy morning star,
Who scan the boding signs with steady eyes
That move towards them from thy northern skies;
And, minding on the hills each scattered flock,
Look ofttimes back across the injurious dark,
Bring tidings of the folds,
Bring wisdom out of worlds beyond thy sea
And longings learned in lands that laugh they are so free.
Welcome, my shepherds of the distant folds!
Sit at my board and take your ease and tell
Most, if the old love holds.
For that old kindred love which makes men one
Lets in upon ye all the hungry pack;
Therefore your speech shall first and foremost tell
Strong must they grow and boldly must they range,
Must hold ye one against the earth;
Let each be free, let each pursue his goal,
But one the racial fire, no, no apostasy of soul.
Then the while ye eat and drink,
Tell me straightly what ye think,
Like children at the mother's board, who speak
Clean from the heart, nor tremble
Lest they pain her, nor dissemble;
But, since the truth will strengthen what is weak And keep the mother's house from evil days,
And since good counsel is the soul of praise,
Utter the thing they think before they go their ways.
Then a little while rejoice
Ere ye turn to toil and stress,
In this isle where Shakespeare's voice
Hallowed every loveliness.
Take your pleasure, care at rest,
On this green-apparel'd breast,
Where your fathers learned my name,
Where the ivied churches stand
That joined them holy hand to hand.
(Ye who follow him, whose word
Runs beyond the city gate,
See that what ye write accord
With the soul that made me great.)
Here my poets, names in story,
Sang the sacred song of glory,
Every greenhill, vale, and stream
Keeps the song and holds the dream;
Whereso'er your eyes shall turn
Some great name shall make you burn,
With a son's tears to your eyes.
Triumphed over tyrant wrongs,
Never yet on sea or land,
And Shelley take his harp and smite
Wild music wonderful and grand.
Bears the ancient light along
With the soul that made me strong.)
O welcome! See how glad I am ye come,-
The lark floods Welcome thro' the summer sky;
Where the great Abbey holds all pride, all sorrow,
The enthusiastic ceremonies at Arles in honor of M. Frédéric Mistral, whose great poem, "Mirèio," was published fifty years ago, make one reflect on the meaning to France and the world of the Provençal genius. No influence in
THE PROVENCAL STRAIN.
French literature has been so unmistakable, and the Provençal strain may be similarly marked in French national characteristics. When we speak of the French as "Latins" we are almost taking the Provençals as the type. Of
course there is really no French type, for the sections of few nations are more diverse than those of France; but it is a testimony to the permeating power of the Provençal genius that we can even loosely think of it as representing the nation. To begin with, France is very different from Paris. If you wandered all over France and then discovered Paris, not having heard of it before you would come on it with astonishment. It would not appear to you by any means a compendium of what you had seen. There is a ferment in Paris which has no counterpart in the serene dullness of most country towns. Yet every province has its own nature which makes it more different from other provinces than the Welsh or Scotch are from the English. The Breton, being a Celt, is devout, superstitious, kindly, and frequently prodigal; the peasants of Normandy are as good at bargains as a Yorkshireman at selling a horse; the heavy, deliberate people of Picardy seem to be made only to eat, drink, work, and sleep, and when they drink too much they do so with less grace than the Bretons; the Provençals have no need of their wine to heighten their emotions, their climate endows them with all their volatility and expansiveness. And yet, in spite of these vivid contrasts and oppositions, the Provençals are on the whole more "French" than any people in France.
deed we do; for this is one of the signs that the spirit of Provence has made itself felt even among us Englishmen. Songs, rustic poetry, legends, and dances make themselves plainly heard and seen across the sea and hills which divide us from the sunny South of France; and the mind of Keats turned instinctively to Provence as representing the allegro side of life:
O for a draught of vintage! that hath been
Cool'd a long age in the deep-delvéd earth,
Tasting of Flora and the country-green, Dance, and Provençal song, and sunburnt mirth
The Provençals are the children of that dry, sparkling air of theirs which is like the air of lofty plateaus. They are not painters, they are not architects; they are poets,—and always have been. Frédéric Mistral is only the latest, and one of the most accomplished, of a very long poetical dynasty. One cannot hear the soft tones and marked and incessant cadences of Provençal speech without feeling that it must be set to music. The troubadours were musicians as well as poets. It is even possible that music counted sometimes for more than the poetry. (In all countries bad poetry is sometimes immortalized by attractive music.) And the troubadours were not like mediæval jesters in an English house. Their profession drew into its ranks some of the noblest in the land. To be a good amateur troubadour was, we imagine, an end as desirable as to be a first-class amateur cricketer in England to-day. William of Poitiers gave respectability to the fraternity. Even the monks burst into song on the national model. The jongleurs, or minstrels, also, were not mountebanks and pariahs like actors in England; they had a reflected glory from the higher grade of the singing and reciting